Showing posts with label donald trump. Show all posts
Showing posts with label donald trump. Show all posts

Thursday, 10 January 2019

President Trump To Visit Border To Push For Wall As Government Shutdown Talks Crumble

WASHINGTON – A day after budget negotiations blew up in acrimony, President Donald Trump will visit Texas on Thursday in an effort to promote his long-promised wall and convince Americans that they should spend billions more on border security.

The trip to McAllen, Texas, takes place a day after Trump stormed out of a meeting with Democratic leaders who were negotiating an end to a partial government shutdown – now in its 20th day – that has left some 800,000 federal workers without pay.
White House officials hope the trip will draw attention to what Trump has described as a "crisis" on the southwest border that he says can be fixed by spending an additional $5.7 billion to build 234 miles of "new physical barrier" along the border. 
Trump is expected to take part in a roundtable and receive a briefing from border officials. The president has also granted an interview to Fox News, which the network said will air Thursday night.  

Democrats flatly reject the need for a wall and say Trump is overstating the situation on the border. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer accused Trump of storming out of a meeting at the White House on Wednesday while administration officials blamed Democrats for negotiating in bad faith.
Hanging over Trump's visit to the border are questions about whether he will declare a national emergency, a move that would allow him to redirect defense money for a wall but that would almost certainly trigger court challenges. An emergency declaration could give Trump an off ramp to reopen the government but continue to fight for the wall.    
Even as polls suggest a slim majority of Americans blame Trump more than Democrats for the shutdown, now the second-longest in U.S. history, the president has stuck to his demand for a wall, which was the focus of his first formal Oval Office address Tuesday. 
Those same polls show that a majority of Republicans back Trump on the wall. 
Trump acknowledged he left the negotiating table Wednesday after Democrats refused to consider his plan for a border wall in exchange for reopening shuttered agencies. 

"I said bye-bye, nothing else works!" the president tweeted.
But the effects of the shutdown will only grow with time, even as the White House scrambles to limit the impact. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration reported a slowdown in food safety inspections, airports cited longer lines at security checkpoints and national parks have been operating for weeks with limited services. 
Perhaps a more pressing problem for Trump: Some Republicans have noted the impact on federal employees and a handful of Senate Republicans – including Susan Collins of Maine, Cory Gardner of Colorado and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska – have said they would at least consider a plan to reopen some agencies.
Trump downplayed GOP divisions after meeting with lawmakers on Capitol Hill and he is expected to do so again as he tours the border on Thursday. 
"There was no discussion about anything other than solidarity,” Trump said. “The Republicans are totally unified." 
Read More »

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Tucker Carlson: What 'crimes' did President Trump commit in the Michael Cohen case?

If you’ve been watching television recently, you’ve probably heard the bad news: The Trump administration is over. Toast. Cooked. Done for good, along with it any hope of the middle class revolution 63 million Americans voted for two years ago.
The reason for this tragedy is simple: The president has been caught committing felonies. Legal experts without law degrees have had a lot to say on TV.
“If precedent means anything in the Trump era, Donald Trump will be — must be — impeached because of the crimes prosecutors say he committed in the Michael Cohen case,” MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell said.
“Both parties need to get on board to pass articles of impeachment,” said Robby Mook, Hillary Clinton’s former 2016 campaign manager.
“You have conspiracy. You have obstruction. You have campaign finance,” said Princeton University professor Eddie Glaude on MSNBC. “You have emoluments … If the Democrats do not pursue this vigorously, they will be, in some ways, held accountable for abdicating their responsibility …  It goes to the moral question, the ethical question. Democracy is at stake!
And U.S. Rep Maxine Waters, D-Calif. said, “This criminal must be brought up by the Congress of the United States for impeachment.”
There’s a lot of emotion there. But to sum up, we’re staring down the barrel of a constitutional crisis. And that crisis stems from what MSNBC describes as “the crimes prosecutors say the president committed in the Michael Cohen case.”
And which crimes were those? The relevant details were spelled out in a piece that ran over the weekend in the New York Times, under this headline: “Prosecutors say Trump directed illegal payments during campaign.”
The gist is this: Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, has told federal investigators that he facilitated payments to two women who said they had affairs with Donald Trump. And then.... well, actually that’s it. That’s the entire story right there. Paying these two women, say federal prosecutors and their flacks at NBC, was a serious crime, a crime worthy of impeachment, if not indictment.
But, you might be wondering, how exactly is that criminal? We’ll explain that to you.
Let’s start by stipulating that everything Michael Cohen has told the feds is absolutely true. Assuming honesty isn’t usually a wise idea with Michael Cohen, but for the sake of argument, let’s do it in this case. Why is what Cohen is alleging a criminal offense?
Remember the facts of the story. These are undisputed: Two women approach Donald Trump and threaten to ruin his career and humiliate his family if he doesn’t give them money. That sounds like a classic case of extortion. Yet, for whatever reason, Trump caves to it, and he directs Michael Cohen to pay the ransom. Now, more than two years later, Trump is a felon for doing this. It doesn’t seem to make sense.
Oh, but you’re not a federal prosecutor on a political mission. If you were a federal prosecutor on a political mission, you’d construe those extortion payments as campaign contributions. You’d do this even though the money in question didn’t come from, or go to, Trump’s presidential campaign.
Then you’d claim that Trump and Cohen violated campaign finance law because they didn’t publicly disclose those payments, despite the fact that disclosing them would nullify the reason for making them in the first place --which was to keep the whole thing secret. That is the argument you’d make, both in federal court and through your proxies on cable television.
It is insultingly stupid. But because everyone in power hates the target of your investigation, nobody would question you. And that’s what’s happening right now.
Screw you, America, and your stupid election. We’re in charge. That’s the real message here.
By this reasoning, any money a political candidate spends to maintain or protect his image while running for office now qualifies as a regulated campaign donation and has to be disclosed. That would include, in addition to an infinite number of other things, buying toothpaste and getting a haircut. It would definitely include the taxpayer-financed slush fund Congress has set aside to pay off its own sexual harassment claims. Yes, those now qualify as campaign contributions. They must be publicly disclosed.
Except they’re not disclosed and never will be. Why is that? That might be a question for congressional leaders, including, Rep. Adam Schiff of Burbank, Calif., the incoming chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, a very powerful man in Congress. What does Mr. Schiff have to say about Congress not disclosing the very same payments that Democrats say Trump should be impeached for not disclosing?
“There's a very real prospect that on the day Donald Trump leaves office, the Justice Department may indict him, that he may be the first president in quite some time to face the real prospect of jail time,” Schiff said on another cable news channel.
So, to translate: Trump’s a criminal! He’s going to jail! For committing a smaller version of the same made-up crime that we in Congress have committed for years and forced you to pay for. By the way, we’re never apologizing for that, because we don’t have to and CNN isn’t going to make us. Screw you, America, and your stupid election. We’re in charge.
That’s the real message here.
Read More »

Friday, 6 July 2018

Donald Trump’s $34 Billion Trade Attack On China Is About To Begin

DONALD Trump’s trade war with China is about to become a reality.

After months of back-and-forth threats between the two powers, steep US tariffs on tens of billions in Chinese goods will come into effect at midnight tonight.


Last month, the White House announced plans to stick 25 per cent tariffs on 1100 Chinese goods.

Starting at midnight tonight, the US will tax 818 Chinese products — worth a total of $US34 billion ($AU46 billion) per year.

The remaining products will remain off the list until after the government has assessed the situation.

China is not happy about this, and Beijing has vowed to retaliate with the same value: 25 per cent tariffs on US products worth $US34 billion per year, including soybeans, seafood and crude oil.

Each side has threatened further tariffs on the other if tensions continue to escalate, sparking fears of an all-out ongoing global trade war.


Tensions have been building between China and the US on a range of issues, from trade to America’s military presence in the South China Sea, which Beijing has repeatedly threatened them on.

The Trump administration has accused China of using predatory tactics in a lawless drive to overtake America’s technological supremacy.

After months of back-and-forth threats between the two powers, steep US tariffs on tens of billions in Chinese goods will come into effect at midnight tonight.

After months of back-and-forth threats between the two powers, steep US tariffs on tens of billions in Chinese goods will come into effect at midnight tonight.Source:AFP

The US feels threatened by China’s “Made In China 2025” plan, a long-range development plan for creating powerful Chinese entities in such areas as information technology, robotics, aerospace equipment, electric vehicles and biopharmaceuticals.

Foreign business groups argue that “Made in China 2025” is unfairly forcing them to the sidelines in those industries.

The Office of the US Trade Representative concluded after an investigation that China’s tactics range from requiring US and other foreign companies to hand over technology in return for access to the vast Chinese market to outright cyber-theft.

The US also argues Beijing uses state money to buy American technology at prices unaffordable for private companies.


If it escalates further, the US-China trade war is expected to have global consequences.

European businesses fear it could spell the biggest single threat to the economic upswing that helped the region get past its financial crisis.

Meanwhile, the Chinese yuan has taken a dive, with the currency hitting an 11-month low yesterday, given investors and traders are uncertain about the tensions between the two countries.

If it escalates further, the US-China trade war is expected to have global consequences.

If it escalates further, the US-China trade war is expected to have global consequences.Source:AP

The Chinese government has warned the US tariffs will not only hurt China and the US, but the rest of the world, because $20 billion of the affected $34 billion goods are produced by foreign companies.

In the US, it’s expected that American farmers — who overwhelmingly backed Mr Trump in the 2016 election — will be hit hardest, with the US products targeted by Beijing heavily related to agriculture.

Economists have also warned that a fully fledged trade war will slow the US economy, and many individual businesses could soon endure hardship as a result.

Canada, Mexico and the European Union have also placed retaliatory tariffs on the US.


Australia was given a special exemption from the trade war in March, after the government frantically lobbied for exclusion from a 25 per cent tariff on steel and 10 per cent tariff on aluminium.

“We have a very close relationship with Australia, we have a trade surplus with Australia. Great country, long term partner, we’ll be doing something with them,” Mr Trump said at the time.

But escalating tensions between China and the US, our first and third-largest trading partners respectively, is definitely not in Australia’s best interests.

Last month, both sides of the Australian Parliament found common ground over their concerns for the US trade war.

This trade war is not in Australia’s interests.
This trade war is not in Australia’s interests.Source:News Corp Australia

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop expressed her concern over the “tit-for-that” nature of the measures, but noted that Australia’s position had been made clear.

“It is of concern and Australia will continue to advocate for free and open trade and investment because that is of great benefit to our country and free trade has benefited the world,” she said. “It is a position that we have made very clear to our American friends and will continue to promote free and open trade and investment.”

Penny Wong said the US decision to go after China was a “very negative development”.

“It is a negative development because it strikes at the integrity of the world trading system which has served the world well, which has ensure disputes are managed and contained, which has ensured that we don’t get into escalating economic fights,” she told the ABC last month. “I think it is a negative thing because trade, conflict in the trading relationship, risks some instability in the broader bilateral relationship.

“We have to continue to assert why the trading system matters and we have to continue to try and ensure that this doesn’t escalate.”
Read More »

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Surprise As Donald Trump Withdraws US From Iran Nuclear Deal

President Donald Trump has announced the withdrawal of the United States from the Iran nuclear deal signed in 2015.

“I am announcing today, that the United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal,” Trump on Tuesday.

“America will not be threatened by nuclear blackmail.

“Today’s action send a critical message, the United States no longer makes empty threats. When I make a promise, I keep them,” Trump said.

Trump had in 2015 said the deal “did nothing to constrain Iran” from pursuing its alleged nefarious activities, especially “its sponsor of terrorism.”

Other signatories to the agreement, including U.S. allies, France and UK, had all urged the U.S. not to withdraw.

The U.S. president, however, said he carried along allies across the world before reaching his conclusion.

“Over the past few months, we have engaged with our allies across the world, including France, Germany and the United Kingdom. We do nothing, we know exactly what will happen,” he said.
Read More »

Saturday, 5 May 2018

Trump To Meet Moon Over N/Korea’s Kim Jong Un

As efforts are being made to bring lasting peace to the Korean Peninsula, the White House has announced that President Trump will host the South Korean President Moon Jae-in, on May 22. 
Trump and Moon: In telephone conversation
The meeting is to ascertain the progress made ahead of a planned meeting between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump and President Moon Jae-in’s meeting marks the third summit for the pair. The meeting “affirms the enduring strength” of the “alliance and deep friendship between our two countries,” the press release from Press Secretary Sarah Sanders’ office said. 

It went on to say that the two leaders would “continue their close coordination of developments regarding the Korean Peninsula following the April 27 inter-Korean Summit,” referring to the recent historic meeting of North and South Korean leaders. Trump and Moon are expected to talk about the president’s upcoming meeting with Kim, the leader of the Hermit Kingdom, the press release said. The president on Friday shared new details about that meeting but without specifics. “We now have a date and we have a location,” Trump told reporters prior to leaving for Dallas, where he was set to speak at the National Rifle Association annual convention. “We’ll be announcing it soon.” 

Trump has previously said the summit with North Korea will unfold in May or early June. A possible meeting between Trump and Kim came to light following a trip then-CIA Director Mike Pompeo took to the rogue nation over Easter weekend. Trump later acknowledged that Pompeo, who has since been confirmed as secretary of state, had met with Kim. 

“Mike Pompeo met with Kim Jong Un in North Korea last week. Meeting went very smoothly and a good relationship was formed. “Details of the Summit are being worked out now. Denuclearization will be a great thing for World, but also for North Korea,” Trump tweeted. 


Read More »

Monday, 16 April 2018

Trump Again Calls Comey A 'Slimeball' In Flurry Of Furious Tweets

Donald Trump hit out again at “slimeball” James Comey on Sunday with a characteristic flurry of furious early-morning tweets in which he also reiterated his concerns over the raid on the offices of his lawyer Michael Cohen.

Comey – whom Trump fired as director of the FBI in May last year because of his investigation into “this Russia thing with Trump and Russia” – is about to release a book about working for Trump, A Higher Loyalty, advance extracts from which have enraged the president. Comey will appear on Sunday night on ABC in his first televised interview to promote the book.

In his tweets on Sunday morning, Trump predicted that “slippery” Comey would “go down as the WORST FBI Director in history, by far”, claimed he was “not smart”, and took issue with several points raised by Comey in his book.

“Unbelievably, James Comey states that Polls, where Crooked Hillary was leading, were a factor in the handling (stupidly) of the Clinton Email probe,” the president wrote on Twitter, a reference to Comey’s suggestion in A Higher Loyalty that his decision to announce the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server had been resumed was influenced by a belief the Democratic candidate was going to win the 2016 election.

“Assuming, as nearly everyone did, that Hillary Clinton would be elected president of the United States in less than two weeks, what would happen to the FBI, the justice department or her own presidency if it later was revealed, after the fact, that she still was the subject of an FBI investigation?” Comey asks in the book.

“In other words, he was making decisions based on the fact that he thought she was going to win, and he wanted a job,” wrote Trump on Sunday. “Slimeball!”

Asked about this section of his book in a clip from the upcoming ABC interview released on Saturday, Comey said: “I don’t remember consciously thinking about that, but it must have been because I was operating in a world where Hillary Clinton was going to beat Donald Trump, and so I’m sure that it was a factor.”

He added: “I don’t remember spelling it out, but it had to have been, that she’s going to be elected president and if I hide this from the American people, she’ll be illegitimate the moment she’s elected, the moment this comes out.”

Trump also rattled through a series of questions he said were not answered in what he called “Comey’s badly reviewed book”: “How come he gave up Classified Information (jail), why did he lie to Congress (jail), why did the DNC refuse to give Server to the FBI (why didn’t they TAKE it), why the phony memos, McCabe’s $700,000 & more?”

Comey said during congressional testimony last year that he helped to leak details of a memo about Trump to the New York Times, but he denied that it contained classified information.

“McCabe’s $700,000” refers to money given to the Virginia state senate campaign of Jill McCabe, the wife of former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe from groups associated with Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe, an ally of Clinton’s. Andrew McCabe, a frequent target of Trump’s attacks, was fired last month.

Trump also claimed he had never asked for Comey’s “Personal Loyalty” – contradicting a statement the ex-FBI chief made to the Senate intelligence committee in 2017, in which Comey claimed Trump had said to him: “I need loyalty.” The president also claimed contemporaneous memos Comey says he compiled of his meetings with Trump were “self serving and FAKE”.

Also weighing on Trump’s mind were the raids on the offices and home of his personal attorney Cohen, which some commentators have suggested may represent a more significant legal threat to Trump than the Russia collusion investigation that special counsel Robert Mueller was appointed to lead after Comey’s firing.

Repeating criticisms he made immediately after the raids, Trump lamented: “Attorney Client privilege is now a thing of the past.”

And in a seeming response to reports he has had difficulty finding attorneys to represent him, the president added: “I have many (too many!) lawyers and they are probably wondering when their offices, and even homes, are going to be raided with everything, including their phones and computers, taken.

“All lawyers are deflated and concerned!” he concluded.

Cohen is due to appear in federal court on Monday in New York for arguments over last week’s raids. His attorneys want prosecutors ordered to temporarily halt an examination of the seized material, arguing that it is protected by attorney-client privilege.

Comey issued a relatively rare tweet on Sunday, using the president’s favourite medium to get in a dig at his former boss.

“My book is about ethical leadership & draws on stories from my life & lessons I learned from others,” the former FBI chief wrote. “3 presidents are in my book: 2 help illustrate the values at the heart of ethical leadership; 1 serves as a counterpoint.”

Meanwhile White House press secretary Sarah Sanders was asked on ABC on Sunday whether Trump had any plans to fire Mueller or his superior, deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein.

“I’m not aware of any plans to make those movements,” she said. But she added: “We do have some real concerns with some of the activities and some of the scope that the investigation has gone.”

She repeated her denial of collusion with Russia in its interference in the election, and said: “It really is getting time to move on.”
Read More »

Thursday, 11 January 2018

Trump Says: "I'll Beat Oprah" If She Runs In 2020

US President Donald Trump has responded to the call for Oprah Winfrey to run for the President of the United States come 2020.
Trump said he thinks running against Oprah will be lots of fun but he believes he will beat her easily. 

"Yeah, I'll beat Oprah; Oprah would be a lot of fun," Trump told reporters during an immigration meeting with congressional lawmakers. Still, he added, "I don't think she's going to run." 
Trump said he knows Winfrey very well. "I like Oprah," he said. "... You know, I did one of her last shows. She had Donald Trump – this was before politics – her last week, and she had Donald Trump and my family. It was very nice."
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Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Former White House Photographer Mocks Donald Trump For Not Knowing The National Anthem By Sharing Photo Of Obama Correctly Reciting The Anthem

This is 2018 and Pete Souza, former White House photographer during the Obama administration, is still being his petty self.
Hours ago, the internet went in on Donald Trump after he was caught on video chewing his mouth and mouthing the wrong words during the recitation of the National Anthem. Trump was booed as he took the field before a big college American football game and then appeared to mumble and stumble his way through the words to the National Anthem.

Following the gaffe and the social media uproar it generated, Pete Souza, who regularly takes jabs at Trump by comparing him to Barack Obama, did it again.

Sharing a photo of Obama reciting the national anthem, Pete wrote: "Yes he knew the words."

See Twitter reaction below.

Video below.

Read More »

Sunday, 7 January 2018

I Am Not Only Smart, I Am A Stable Genius – Trump

US president Donald Trump, has a word for critics who question his mental stability and intelligence.

His recent response to critics is coming after the publication of Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by Michael Wolff, a book that has provoked major public rift with Trump and his former strategist, Steve Bannon, one of the main sources of the book.

Trump in his usual fashion, took to twitter to slam critics, tweeting;

Actually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart. Crooked Hillary Clinton also played these cards very hard and, as everyone knows, went down in flames. “I went from very successful businessman to top TV star to President of the United States (on my first try). I think that would qualify as not smart, but genius…and a very stable genius at that!
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Tuesday, 2 January 2018

2018 Will Be Tremendous For United States - Trump

Donald Trump promised 2018 will be a "tremendous year" as he hosted a lavish New Year's party at his resort in Florida.
The US President appeared in black tie alongside First Lady Melania and son Barron.

He spoke briefly to reporters outside saying: "We are going to have a tremendous year.
"Stock market I think is going to continue to go up, companies are going to continue to come into the country."
He dismissed breaking reports from North Korea of Kim Jong Un making fresh nuclear threats.
"We'll see, we'll see," Trump said.
Attendees at the event included Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin accompanied by his wife, Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner, Eric Trumo and his wife Lara and also Donald Trump Jr. and his eldest son, Don III.
Read More »

Saturday, 30 December 2017

Trump Administration Fires All Members Of HIV/AIDS Advisory Council Via FedEx Letter

The President Trump administration has dismissed all of the remaining members of the Obama-appointed Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA).
This comes months after a half-dozen members resigned in protest of the Trump administration's position on health policies.

The Washington Blade reported that the firings came without warning by way of a FedEx letter and were unexpected by most of its membership. 

Confirming the termination in a statement, PACHA executive director Kaye Hayes said:
“On December 27, 2017, the current members of Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS received a letter informing them that the Administration was terminating their appointments. They were also thanked for their leadership, dedication and commitment to the effort.”
Hayes also added that the Trump administration has every right to appoint new members to the council.

According to her, during the Obama administration, a majority of George W. Bush’s appointees were cleared out to make room for new faces.

Meanwhile, Scott Schoettes, a former member of PACHA, disagreed openly on Twitter, calling the firings a “purge.” 
He wrote: @realDonaldTrump executing a purge: remaking the courts; ppl who use “transgender” and “vulnerable” out at HHS; #PACHA (#HIV council) members gone; wants to eliminate ppl @ FBI who didn’t vote for him; attempts to undermine free press. #Fascist #TrumpRussia #WeObject #Resist
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Saturday, 16 December 2017

Shaquille O’Neal Says: ‘Trump Is Possibly The Best President Of The President Of All Times Ever, He Is Not Afraid To…’

Recently when he was asked about President Trump retweeting a couple of videos that made a big fuzz in the media, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) stated that Trump had “been one of the best presidents” he ever served under.

O’Neal stated “I’m not aware of it. I don’t pay much attention to his tweets. I’ll say this for you. He’s been one of the best presidents I’ve served under.”


O’Neal continued, “The president is smart, powerful and a good counterpuncher.I think he attacks anyone he perceives or believes is attacking him or the country.”

“He should be given the Medal of Freedom for talking his mind in such a bold, honest, and straightforward manner.” O’Neal added.

Read More »

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Pope Francis, UN & Others Blame Donald Trump For Recognizing Jerusalem As Israel Capital

Pope Francis, the United Nations, the European Union and others have criticized President Trump’s decision to declare Jerusalem the capital of Israel.

The international leaders in separate statements, criticized the Trump administration’s decision on Wednesday to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, describing it as a dangerous disruption that contravenes several United Nations resolutions and could inflame one of the world’s thorniest conflicts.

Pope Francis, the United Nations, the European Union and others have criticized President Trump’s decision to declare Jerusalem the capital of Israel.

The international leaders in separate statements, criticized the Trump administration’s decision on Wednesday to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, describing it as a dangerous disruption that contravenes several United Nations resolutions and could inflame one of the world’s thorniest conflicts.

UN Secretary General, António Guterres and Pope Francis both expressed alarm that the announcement would provoke new tensions in the Holy City, which is revered by Jews, Christians and Muslims.
Within minutes of Mr. Trump’s speech, in which he said the American Embassy would be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Mr. Guterres delivered what amounted to a diplomatic rebuke.

Reading a statement outside the Security Council chambers at United Nations headquarters in New York, Mr. Guterres criticized “any unilateral measures that would jeopardize the prospect of peace for Israelis and Palestinians,” underscoring the administration’s departure from decades of American policy.

“Jerusalem is a final-status issue that must be resolved through direct negotiations between the two parties on the basis of the relevant Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, taking into account the legitimate concerns of both the Palestinian and the Israeli sides,” Mr. Guterres said.

“In this moment of great anxiety, I want to make it clear: there is no alternative to the two-state solution,” he said. “There is no Plan B.”

In Rome, Pope Francis prayed that Jerusalem’s status be preserved and needless conflict avoided.

“I cannot remain silent about my deep concern for the situation that has developed in recent days,” Francis said at his weekly general audience at the Vatican. “And at the same time, I wish to make a heartfelt appeal to ensure that everyone is committed to respecting the status quo of the city, in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the United Nations.”

“Jerusalem is a unique city,” he said, “sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims, where the Holy Places for the respective religions are venerated, and it has a special vocation to peace.”
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Thursday, 2 November 2017

Photos From President Trump's Halloween Party At The White House

On Monday night, The White House transformed from a grandiose building into a haunted spectacle to celebrate Halloween.

President Trump posed with a kid in skeleton costume and a MAGA hat, while his wife Melania Trump was all smiles with the kids that came through for the bash.

About 6,000 children and adults were invited for trick-or-treating at the White House on Halloween eve. 

Children from more than 20 schools in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia attended the festivities on the South Lawn, along with military families and members of unspecified community organisations.
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Trump Vows To Cancel US Green Card Lottery

President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he would end the popular US green card lottery as police said a radicalised Uzbek man staged the deadly truck ramming in New York after entering the country under the programme.

The move could spell the end to the US immigration hopes of millions of people around the world who have tried to win US residence permits through the program since it was created 27 years ago.

“I am starting the process of terminating the diversity lottery program,” Trump angrily told reporters. 
“We have to do what’s right to protect our citizens,” he said. “We will get rid of this lottery program as soon as possible.”

The programme awards US permanent resident visas to around 50,000 applicants from around the world each year, opening the door as well for members of their broader families to follow them, so-called chain migration.
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Wednesday, 25 October 2017

US To Resume Refugee Admissions

The United States will resume accepting refugees after a 120-day ban, but arrivals from 11 “high-risk” countries, most of them home to Muslim majorities, will still be blocked, officials announced Tuesday.

The temporary ban, which President Donald Trump fought to implement since January and finally proceeded with in late June after a Supreme Court decision, allowed officials to review security procedures and set tougher screening procedures.

Jennifer Higgins, associate director for refugees at the US Citizenship and Immigration Services agency, said applicants will face “enhanced” vetting as a result of the review, including more in-depth checks of their social media presence and connections.

“The security of the American people is our highest priority,” she told journalists in a briefing.

Trump issued a new executive order on refugees late Tuesday that replaced the expiring one, which was a part of his controversial travel ban that evoked a series of court challenges on the grounds it targeted Muslims.

The new order will accompany a sharp cutback on refugee admissions under Trump.

President Barack Obama set the refugee cap, for the fiscal year that ended on September 30, 2017, at 110,000.

But after becoming president, Trump slashed that to 53,000 even as he fought to put in place a full ban.

For fiscal year 2018, Trump has cut the maximum number to 45,000.

Officials declined to list the 11 countries, but said they are the same as on a 2015 list for tougher screening, requiring a “Security Advisory Opinion.”

They are now subject to another 90-day security and intelligence review, but the officials would not say what could happen then.

Refugee agencies pointed to the affected countries as Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, North Korea, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

All but North Korea are mainly Muslim populations, and in the past have been the source of the largest portion of US refugee admissions.

They represent close to half of all the refugees entering the United States. In fiscal 2017, out of 53,716 refugees the US accepted, 22,150 came from Syria, Iraq, Iran and Somalia.

The officials said the government would still review certain special cases from the 11 countries, without describing what would qualify them.

Kathleen Newland, a senior fellow of the Migration Policy Institute, said there is significant backup of refugees already with approval waiting to get into the United States.

But the net effect over the longer term will be that the top United Nations refugee official will not be able to lean on the United States to accept as many people as in the past.

“I expect they just won’t be referring as many cases for US resettlement,” Newland said.

Read More »

Friday, 20 October 2017

Trump Gives His Team 'a 10' On Puerto Rico Response

WASHINGTON — With the governor of Puerto Rico at his side, President Trump praised storm recovery on the island Thursday despite the fact that millions of citizens there lack power and sufficient water nearly a month after Hurricane Maria.
"I'd say it was a 10" on a scale of 10, Trump told reporters before meeting with Gov. Ricardo Rossello.
President Trump and Gov. Ricardo Rossello of Puerto Rico.  


In the wake of Hurricane Maria, which struck Puerto Rico on Sept. 20, more than a third of island households lack running water and less than one-fifth of the territory's power grid has been restored.

Rossello said he is satisfied with the federal government's efforts, but  "a lot still has to be done."

Trump emphasized the logistical challenges of delivering relief supplies to the island, stressing that the storm damaged ports and interior roadways.

As he has previously, Trump said Puerto Rico's infrastructure was in bad shape before the hurricane, and there has "never been a situation" in which "power and energy have been so devastated" as in Puerto Rico.

"It's a tough situation," Trump said. "So much has to be rebuilt, even from before."

The president also said "there has been corruption on the island," and that has been an impediment in delivering supplies.

While the federal government is working closely with Puerto Rico officials, Trump also warned that the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other U.S. officials cannot stay in place forever.

"You know, at some point, FEMA has to leave, first responders have to leave and people have to take over," he said.

At one point, Trump sought Rossello's assessment of the U.S. response by asking, "did we do a great job?"

Said the governor: "You responded immediately, sir."
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Thursday, 19 October 2017

This Is The Fallen Soldier Who Trump Reportedly Said 'Knew What He Signed Up For'

President Trump on Wednesday denied telling the widow of a U.S. soldier killed by Islamic State-linked militants in Niger that her husband knew "what he signed up for, but I guess it still hurts."
The response to that reported conversation has been constant and loud on social media. But how much do we know about the soldier and the family he left behind while serving his country?

His name is La David Johnson. He was 25 years old, a husband and a father. 

More: Trump's handling of cases involving troops killed in action part of growing controversy

First, the controversy 
Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., said she overheard the comment during a conversation on speaker phone Tuesday between Trump and Army Sgt. La David Johnson's widow, Myeshia Johnson, as they traveled together to meet Johnson's body in Miami.

Continue Reading, Watch Video HERE
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'Seinfeld's' John O'Hurley On Supporting Trump In Hollywood: 'I Was Embarrassed For My Profession'

The actor, best known as Elaine Benes' eccentric boss J. Peterman on "Seinfeld,"is part of a small group of Hollywood stars who supported President Trump in the 2016 presidential election.
"Every time I have mentioned that I supported Trump in this election, people get vicariously angry at me, and they don't believe that it's possible that someone might think differently than they do," O'Hurley told Fox & Friends Thursday.
"There is a band of conservatism in Hollywood but it leans so much to one side that it doesn't allow for free discussion," he said.
The "Swing Away" star added he doesn't understand why his fellow actors believe they set the standard of morality.
"Never in the history of entertainment were actors considered moral barometers," he said. "Now all of a sudden we feel as though we have the mantle of moral behavior from Hollywood?"
Referencing the mounting allegations of sexual assault and harassment against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, O'Hurley added, "And as we've seen over the last couple of weeks, I think it might be time for us to weed our own garden."
He specifically criticized the cast of the Broadway show "Hamilton" for calling out Vice President Mike Pence last year when he attended their show.
"I was embarrassed for my profession because I don't think we should be pontificating from the stage," said the seasoned Broadway actor. "I wouldn't do it and I wouldn't allow it with my cast."
The 63-year-old also spoke out against the NFL national anthem protests. 
"I think it's ridiculous. I go to the NFL for escapism. I don't want to be slapped in the face with somebody's political views," he shared.
O'Hurley said just like he should not be allowed to "stand up in the middle of a Broadway show and announce my political views," NFL players should keep their views to themselves.
"I don't believe that under the employment -- and they are being employed at the time -- so it's not their constitutional right to do that."
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Thursday, 12 October 2017

Donald Trump Threatens To Shut Down NBC And Other TV News Networks That Criticise Him

Mr Trump has threatened to revoke broadcast licenses for networks airing content critical of him

Donald Trump has threatened to shut down NBC and other American networks, saying that they peddle fake news.
"With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License? Bad for country!" Mr Trump wrote in a tweet.
Mr Trump's tweet came in response to a story written by NBC, which said that Mr Trump had sought to increase America's nuclear arsenal tenfold after taking a look at a briefing slide that showed steady reduction of the US nuclear arsenal since the 1960s. The story cited three officials who were reportedly in the room when Mr Trump made the comments.

The President has regularly targeted news networks critical of him since January, when he gave a press conference as President-elect and shouted down a CNN reporter as "fake news". The term - which Mr Trump says he invented but had been used frequently before to describe the proliferation of stories written by anonymous bloggers to spread lies during the 2016 election - has since become one of his go-to insults when the media publishes critical coverage of the Trump administration."Fake @NBCNews made up a story that I wanted a 'tenfold' increase in our US nuclear arsenal," Mr Trump had tweeted before his threat. "Pure fiction, mad eup to demean. NBC = CNN!"

MSNBC: Mattis & Kelly talk about what they would do if Trump "lunged for the nuclear football"
The report about Mr Trump's nuclear arsenal said that the joint chiefs of staff and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson all pushed back on the nuclear ambitions, and that Mr Tillerson later called the President a "moron" following the meeting. Mr Tillerson last week refused to confirm that he had called the President that, and Mr Trump has said that those reports are fake news. During an interview, the President also said that he would have to compare IQ scores with Mr Tillerson if his secretary had actually made the remarks.
It isn't clear that Mr Trump would be able to easily revoke broadcast licenses for any of the major networks simply because he disagrees with the content they air, however.
Neither NBC or ABC released statement following the tweet, but others in government stepped in to comment on the issue. Democratic Senator Ed markey wrote to FCC chairman Ajit Pai Wednesday, urging him to resist requests from the President to revoke licenses because of coverage.
Donald Trump denies Mike Pence NFL walkout was a publicity stunt
"It is inappropriate for the President to propose challenging broadcasters' licences because he disagrees with their coverage," that letter read. "The First Amendment is hte cornerstone of our democracy, and the news media plays an instrumental role in educating the American public and holding elected officials accountable. Any insinuation that elected officials could use the levers of government to control or sensor the news media would represent a startling degradation of the freedom of press."

emocracy, and the news media plays an instrumental role in educating the American public and holding elected officials accountable. Any insinuation that elected officials could use the levers of government to control or sensor the news media would represent a startling degradation of the freedom of press."

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which oversees licensing - notably, it licenses individual broadcast stations, not to networks specifically - is an independent agency in the federal government, and isn't required to follow orders directly from the White House as would branches of the executive like the Department of Justice, for instance. While the commissioners of the FCC are appointed by the President and approved by the Senate, the agency's relative independence is there by design to push back on situations where someone in the executive branch would attempt to dampen the free speech protections provided to licensed broadcasters.
Mr Trump's comments came just one day after an American reporter was sentenced to prison in a Turkish court, where she was convicted of terrorist propaganda charges. That imprisonment was widely seen as highlighting the increased targeting of journalists in that country, which has been scrutinized for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government crackdown on media freedoms.

"Adult daycare shift alert," Mr Bharara tweeted. "Please report for duty."Responding to Mr Trump's musing about revoking licenses for broadcast networks critical of him, former US federal Prosecutor and frequent Trump critic Preet Bharara called the President childish.

It wasn't immediately clear if Mr Trump intended to threaten cable news networks as well, which are regulated differently than their broadcast counterparts.

Source: Independent
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